Being as passionate about hot drinks as our other drinks, we've found a fantastic Organic FairTrade coffee.
Our Organic Espresso beans are described as a soft, fruity, 100% organic espresso from Central America, East Africa and India. A floral fragrance from East Africa coupled with a good strong depth of body from Indian Robusta makes for a complex and rich espresso.
Once roasted, pretty much all coffee beans look the same. But there are actually dozens of different varieties of coffee beans. When it comes to your daily cup, though, there are really only two that matter: Arabica and Robusta. These are the two primary types of coffee cultivated for drinking.
What's the difference between the two? It's significant, and it's helpful to understand when choosing coffee. The two varieties differ in taste, growing conditions, price. Arabica beans tend to have a sweeter, softer taste, with tones of sugar, fruit, and berries. Their acidity is higher, with that winey taste that characterizes coffee with excellent acidity.
Robusta, however, has a stronger, harsher taste, with a grain-like overtone and peanutty aftertaste. They contain twice as much caffeine as Arabica beans, and they are generally considered to be of inferior quality compared to Arabica. Some Robusta, like ours, are of high quality and valued especially in espressos for their deep flavour and good crema.
Robustas, however, are easier to grow. They can grow at lower altitudes than Arabicas, and they are less vulnerable to pests and weather conditions. They produce fruit much more quickly than the Arabicas, which need several years to come to maturity, and they yield more crop per tree.
Robusta is grown exclusively in the Eastern Hemisphere, primarily in Africa and Indonesia. Arabica is also grown in Africa and Papua New Guinea, but it's grown dominantly in Latin America. Colombia only produces Arabica beans. Some countries, like Brazil and India, produce both.
Arabica, then, ends up being pricier, of course. Most supermarket coffee is exclusively Robusta, and instant and cheap ground coffees are certainly Robusta. You can still find Arabica in the supermarkets/shops, but just because it's labelled Arabica does not mean it's of high quality.
Ultimately it's a question of personal taste! Â There's even more on coffee here!